“Smart simply means you’re ready to learn”

Protest observer (Walter Gadsden) in Birmingha...

Protest observer (Walter Gadsden) in Birmingham, Alabama, USA, on 3 May 1963, being attacked by police dogs during a civil rights protest. See Birmingham campaign. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

STEM education has arisen as a national priority in the U.S., as it has become increasingly apparent that U.S. students are not advancing in math and science at the same pace as in other countries. In fact, recent studies show that: In the 2006 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) comparison, American students ranked 21st out of 30 in science literacy among students from developed countries, and 25th out of 30 in math literacy. – Samsung Hope for Children – Solve for Tomorrow

I came across this TED talk by Freeman Hrabowski about STEM education at the college level.  I was inspired by the results that he has been able to achieve at the University of Maryland – Baltimore County.


These quotes in particular stayed with me.

“Most people don’t realize that it’s not just minorities who don’t do well in science and engineering — quite frankly, you’re talking about Americans.”

“It’s hard work that makes the difference. I don’t care how smart you are or how smart you think you are. Smart simply means you’re ready to learn.” – Freeman Hrabowski

I was also excited to learn that Hrabowski was a part of the Birmingham Alabama Children’s Crusade to end segregation in 1963.  Teaching Tolerance has a great documentary about the Children’s Crusade – called “Might Times: The Children’s March” available for free for educators.

One last thing, speaking of STEM, we’ll be hiring a Tronix Team manager in the next month to do Science Enrichment education programming in the next few weeks.  If you hurry you can get a resume and cover letter in before the position closes.  Details here.